tv John King USA CNN September 10, 2010 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT
facebook.com/cnnsituationroom. "john king usa" starts right now. good evening everyone. this is september 10th, and i remember the morning of september 11th as if it were yesterday. people ordered to run, and people were screaming, and there was a plane headed toward the white house or the capitol. fear and confusion. then sadly, the crisp blue sky stained with smoke across the potomac at the pentagon. the nation will again pause and remember tomorrow september 11th not as democrats or republicans, but as americans. to reinforce that point, laura bush and michelle obama will pay tribute together at the flight 93 crash in shanksville, pennsylvania. this is more on my mind this
year than any other, due to emotional talks about mosques, and even though the president did not draw the discussions in, he talked a about it today at the white house, and he shrugged off the cold reality that many democrats are running from him and his agenda this political year. but first, the issue that changed the president to professorial on 9/11. he says he sees no reason that a mosque and cultural center should not be built a few blocks from what we now call ground zero. so is this 9/1 different and we will talk it over with david gergen, and roland martin and erick erickson, and two correspondents in the east room for the news conference, times michael sheerer, and ed henry. ed, start with the president talking so passionately about tolerance in america, and about,
and there was some controversy about a ramadan dinner he said he supported the mosque and then some thought he had stepped back, but today, it is clear from president obama that if they want to build that mosque, they should be allowed. >> one of the inalienable rights is to practice their religion freely. and what that means is that if you could build a church on a site, you could build a synagogue on a site, if you could bailed hindu temple on a site, then you should be able to build a mosque on the site. >> now, he came into the room to draw contrast on the economy, but the president and his staff had no know by saying that he reignited the whole mosque debate. >> he did, but he was not equivocating like he had seemed to have done before. he was passionate and said after that, look, i'm commander in chief, a and i have muslim
soldiers serving in afghanistan and the american people need to know we are not at war with islam. he earlier also talked about how he praised george w. bush and said that the thing i most admired is that after 9/11 he made it crystal clear that we are not at war with islam. just after he criticized president bush for the economy. so this is dangerous territory, because there are a large number of americans who mistake him for being muslim, so to get out there on these issues, it is politically treacherous and that is why he quickly added at one point, i'm a president of christian faith and we are all one nation under god. >> i want to continue with the discussion and without taking sides, but in the way, amen. we have so many politicians driven by the polls and the talking points and sound the same day in, day out, and i know, erick, if this is what he believes, isn't it refreshing to
see someone passionate and this is what i believe and what i think, and now you can debate me. >> it was refreshing after having sat after the press conference and question after question and every one had to have the words middle-class in the answer until the last. then he was passionate and the hand gestures came back and the pointing and the karate chop hand maneuver, they all came back to him, but the problem for him is that we are starting this show talk about this issue, and not the economy. and everyone else is doing the same. >> well, i also think, that it is important to talk about the booder m broader message that the president was trying to puncture there given the threatened koran burnings, and the mosque at ground zero, so are we more tolerant or more suspicious after 9/11. i want to bring in david and rowland, but first here is the president speaking about tolerance and as the president and more importantly as the
commander in chief. >> i have got muslims who are fighting in afghanistan. in the uniform of the united states' armed forces. they are out there putting their lines on the line for us. we have to make sure that we are crystal clear for our sakes and their sakes, they are americans. we honor their service. and part of honoring their service is making sure they understand that we don't differentiate between them and us. it is just us. >> david, he could have shyed away or given shorter answers knowing there is an election 53 days away and this is quick sand perhaps and he was passionate about the issues remembering that he is president well past that election in 53 days. >> john, he seemed to resolve whatever internal doubts he may have had about this issue and
come out four square and spoke from the heart and from his soul on this. i do think that he deserved points for courage given the polls and how upset many americans are. i think that he gave what is one of the best arguments that i have heard for placing the mosque here. what surprised me as well is that i thought that given what the imam's conversation with cnn a couple of nights ago in which he said, look, if i had known what i know now, i would not have put it here and i'm looking for an alternative, i thought that the president would encourage that, you know, perhaps trying to find ways to make this more of an interfaith center than he did, so i was surprised that he came out saying, okay, if they want to build it here not only do they have that right, but he seemed to say today, it is also the right thing the do, and let's m embrace it. i was surprised by that and give him points for courage, but ways he could have walked the line a
little more evenly. >> roland, come on in. >> well, remember, what was the question that wendel goaler asked, and the question dealt with the climate in this country. there were other questions that dealt with that and that is why you saw the president talk about this whole issue of intolerance, and understand that this is also a president who has been under attack with what he has different values, a different world view, and so i think that he, himself, realizes that you have people in this country, who, you don't know, but you don't have to call them bigots or racists or anti-muslim, but there are people out there who are expressing these doubts who are not asking some drit ccriti questions, but that is, i'm talking about a fellow american, so by reinforcing that, it is by recognizing what am i doing? am i looking at every muslim in the same way as assuming they are terrorists? that is the problem we have in the country right now. >> it is an excellent point that
roland makes. we will get to the koran burning controversy in a moment, but step back and come up to 30,000 feet for a moment, and michael sherer, does this 9/11 seem more politicized than those in the past? >> no doubt about it. it started three or four weeks ago in this. this is, again, a problem for the president. he would rather be talking about middle-class, middle-class, middle-class, but what he is doing to fight for them, but the thing we are taking away from this is that when he talks about these issues, he is far more passionate. >> and yes, he would prefer other things, david gergen, but if some of the ardent supporters are tuned out for this campaigners because they are disappointed in him or disappointed in the congress and don't think that the elections matter, but if they see a passionate president, might they say, now i remember. >> i'm not so sure, because back to michael's point which is well taken, because he didn't have the same sense of passion about jobs and about the middle-class.
you know, i thought that yesterday we could have had a whole conversation on television about that piece on the front of the new york times saying that china is eating our lunch when it comes to renewable energy. they have created 1 million job, and here the jobs are disappearing and going to china on the renewable energy and how do we fight for people? that is what the people and the democratic party and americans want to see them doing is fighting for jobs. >> let's let the people at home -- roland, let the people at home be the judge. we heard the president talking about tolerance and the proposed mosque and cultural center, and here is the president drawing a difference between the republicans and the democrats. >> if you want the same kinds of skewed policies that led us up to this cries is, then, the republicans are ready to offer that. but, if you want policies moving us on even though you are frustrated and even though change is not happening as fast as you'd like, then the
democrats will do fine in november. >> it is a fair point, david gergen, makes that he is drawing a distinction but in a more professorial way and not as passionate way. >> but he has laid out the stakes of the election and the contrast with the republicans, but in terms of lack of passion on this, these proposals he laid out, the new ones this week, we have chewed over them all week and maybe he should have saved them for friday to roll them out for the news conference, but also, they are going nowhere fast. it is not just the republicans who don't want to give him a last minute victory before the midterms, but very little from harry reid or nancy pelosi saying that we need them done before the election. the clock is ticking. >> john, for you who have been around a lot longer than me, and it was like the president of the united states giving a press conference or a campaign stump, so he can't give the fire in the belly like -- >> i have heard presidents of both parties be partisan in east
room or any room in the white house, so maybe he found it personally restricting, but history supports that any president can be passionate in the white house. and roland, we have to take a break, but is that koran burning still scheduled tomorrow? is there confusion? and what did the president say today in drawing a line that he thought it was important that if administration get involved. stay with us. this is an interior that exceeds even the promise of the exterior. this is the all-new jaguar xj. the stunning result of taking a very different road. so, we set out to discover the nutritional science at purina one, we want your cat to be as healthy as possible in some of nature's best ingredients. that's how we created purina one with smartblend. nutritionally optimized with
real salmon, wholesome grains and essential antioxidants, for strong muscles, vital energy, a healthy immune system, and a real difference in your cat. purina one improved with smartblend. discover what one can do. i but i justve my 5 employcan't afford it.ance, i have diabetes. i didn't miss a premium payment for 10 years. and i'm worried if i lose my job, i won't be able to afford insurance. when i graduated from college, i lost my health insurance. the minute i got sick, i lost my insurance. not anymore. not anymore. not anymore. america's healthcare reforms change lives for the better. to find out how it can help you, visit us at americasfairhealthcare.org it's not just fair, it's the law. 48 man and woman: ♪ it's the happy birthday song ♪ love, dad and ♪ love, mom ♪ it's your birthday, now, that's the bomb ♪
if we can believe the people in a small church in gainesville, florida, the koran burning is off. several times today pastor jones or people who say they have talked to him came outside to that microphone and said he would not, would not burn a koran, but on morning shows, jones said he may be. he is perhaps still there or on his way to go to new york to meet with the imam set to build the mosque near ground zero. so as we continue the discussion here, we are not the only ones talking about it. today, the president of the united states said he was not responsible for elevating the story, but he said in strong language as president and commander in chief, why he
thought it was important for his administration to stop the koran burning. >> the idea that we would burn the sacred texts of someone else's religion is contrary to what this country stands for. it is contrary to what this nation was founded on. and, you know, my hope is that this individual prays on it and refrains from doing it. but, i'm also commander in chief, and we are seeing today riots in kabul, riots in afghanistan that threaten our young men and will in uniform. >> roland, as the president made the term individual and i have used gad fly and pastor, but the president was being kind there, but to the bigger point, the president does view this as a national security risk. >> absolutely, because, again,
how this is going to be perceived around the world is important. i mean, we saw what happened with those danish cartoons and the editorial drawings drawn up, and general petraeus has come out and made a comment as well, and i will tell you as a christian, as the husband of an ordained minister, i would hope that this pastor could be more prophetic as opposed to partisan, as opposed to saying i am somehow going to recognize 9/11 and what took place nine years ago in a prophetic pastoral manner as opposed to in this hyperpartisan manner. he should think more about the god in him versus the secular, versus the flesh in him. >> i want to show the viewers some pictures that came in from pakistan, the koran burning protest there, and it is one of the many protests that our administration says and our cnn international desk has tracked around the world, muslims around the world voicing outrage that
this could possibly happen in the united states. david, when you see the pictures, it reinforces the president's concerns number one, and how did this president do today? >> he had the right note on this. there was a national concern, and somebody died in the protests today in afghanistan and number of people wounded by gunshots in those protests. can i just say that it is a pleasure that we have now had 12 hours without seeing that jerk from florida on national television. it is such a pleasant change from what we have had over the last week. i -- i think that it seems to me that the media in general and television in particular is now moving away from trying to give this guy a platform and that is terrif terrific, because it will help to diffuse this in some way. i don't see him as a partisan. there is nothing partisan about him. i see him as a lunatic who's looking for publicity.
>> i would -- >> well, it is -- >> well go, ahead, roland. >> well, first of all your role as a pastor based upon the sermon on the mount is to bring people to christ, and so my whole point is that his role as a prophetic voice as opposed to saying i'moing the do this actual burning of the koran as a way to be more of a patriot, as a testament to 9/11, and that was the whole point there, and it was more prophetic than partisan. >> and we call the word lunatic used and i said gadfly, and fringed and others out there, and hopefully we don't have to hear from terry jones in the last 40 minutes of this program, but as we know today, the president complimented george w. bush today, and so let's listen to george w. bush that after 9/11, a distinction that he made in his presidency time and time again, and said it is critical. >> the face of terrorism is not the true face of islam.
that is not what islam is all about. islam is peace. these terrorists don't represent peace. they represent evil and war. when we think of islam, we think of a faith that brings comfort to a billion people around the world. >> so, forget and lump it together the fringe idiot in florida, but why across america, and forget what he wants to do, but is that a tougher statement today? more doubt, more suspicion? more wonder and more intolerance? >> well, the president today attributed it in part to the fact that there is so much economic anxiety out there, and people are going to lash out. another thing, when you watch president bush saying that, it is remarkable now that people are still in this country saying that you can't put a mosque near ground zero, because they attacked us on 9/11 as if it were islam that attacked instead of the terrorists, and that
distinction is still not made enough in the country. >> and this is the frustration all week with this and the conflating it with the mosque issue, is that there is a conversation that needs to be had that everyone is dancing around and that is how can one pastor in florida by burning some books set off millions of people to riot in the streets overseas, and i mean, as an example last year, our military in afghanistan burned a pile of bibles so that american soldiers would not be tempted to pr ed e sell tiz, and when we talk about intolerance breeds intolerance, and what about the vices of those writing in the street about a danish film worker over burning korans? >> well, you have to bring the media into this issue. over the last few years we have
had a segmentation of the press that is feeding this economic discontent and so you have the ability of one, you know, whatever you want to call him, to sort of capture our imagination and everyone starts to run wit, ah it, and it domins the news cycle and we have one or two of these every week, and we have to turn off the cameras of the stakehouse and this guy does not have power over the troops and he should not cause protests in iran, and if so, we will have koran burnings in every state, and there are plenty of people out there who want to do that. >> an amen on that. and thank you all for coming in here. a lot more to come in the program. we will continue the conversation on the sensitive issues. among the people we will talk to the night is fareed zakaria, and he says that the united states
government grossly overreacted to 9/11, and he will explain in a provocative comment. and who was laid off? firefighters, and policemen, and because of budget cuts, they are being laid off, in new york state, and in your city, too? it is critical race in many midterms, and we will go to discuss the president's views of the economy and why so hard for the president to say that word? if you suffer from heartburn two or more days a week,
you're one of the 50 million americans with frequent heartburn. did you know, with prilosec otc, you can stop frequent heartburn before it starts? heartburn happens when stomach acid refluxes, or backs up into the esophagus. this causes the burning sensation in your chest, known as heartburn. with just one pill a day, prilosec otc treats frequent heartburn for 24 hours, providing all-day and all-night protection. here's how it works -- prilosec otc's unique delayed-release system protects the medicine as it passes through the stomach's tough acid. the medicine then gets absorbed into the body,
turning off many acid-producing pumps at the source, so less acid is produced. with just one pill a day, you get 24-hour heartburn protection all day and all night, satisfaction guaranteed. trust the number-one doctor-, gastroenterologist-, and pharmacist-recommended brand to treat your frequent heartburn. to request a free sample, visit prilosecotc.com. prilosec otc. heartburn gone. power on.
firefighters in san bruno, california, say that no one is missing after a gigantic fire after a gasline exploded. four people died and dozens injured. iran says that they will not release a u.s. hiker because the judicial process is not complete. the hikers have been held for 13 months. strong words by secretary robert gates as he marked world suicide prevention day. >> there is always a horrible tragedy to see a service member safely off of the battlefield only to lose them to this scourge. we can, we must, and we will do better. >> "john king usa" will be right back. [ woman ] alright, so this tylenol 8 hour lasts 8 hours.
but aleve can last 12 hours. and aleve was proven to work better on pain than tylenol 8 hour. so why am i still thinking about this? how are you? good, how are you? [ male announcer ] aleve. proven better on pain. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no more $2, $3 fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no more paying to access your own money. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 it'd be like every atm in the world was your atm. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 the schwab bank high yield investor checking(tm) account. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 zero atm fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 a great interest rate. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no minimums. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 the biggest thing in checking since checks. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 open an account at 1-800-4schwab or schwab.com.
it is time to go one-on-one. >> as we approach the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks my next guest says it is clear that the united states overreacted and writing in newsweek, fareed zakaria asks when do we declare victory? on that point, fareed, you have been writing for years that perhaps the united states government overreacted and went too far and this year, you have posted comments on cnn.com and the reaction was more overwhelming than in years past and why is that so? >> well, part of what is going on, john, is that we are at a
very polarized moment, almost dysfunctionally polarized so that anything that one says is, can taken as red meat by one side or another to whip people into a frenzy or hysteria, and i feel that as if the emergency measures have gone too far and homeland security has gone too far and gargantuan of security, where we have created a huge space, 22 u.s. capitols to house the new intelligence and bureaucrats, 250,000 of them. this is an issue where it would not necessarily be a left-right divide, but the right now views this as suggesting that, you know, that there is no enemy, that this is appeasement, and to a certain extent the left has always been uncomfortable with the idea that we might have done something smart in the first few months and year or two after 9/11, because it suggests that the bush administration deserves some credit for getting a few
things right, and the result is that you can have a rational conversation about this subject nine years after the event. >> so, you talk about the gargantuan bureaucracy and the dollars involved and the new report out by the 9/11 commission agree with you, so that so many military measures overseas, seem to be that the effort is to radicalize folks right here in the united states, and is the government at all prepared for that part of the threat? >> do you know, that the first part of what they say, and it is important to keep in mind that we have something like a 500 to 1 ratio of dollars being spent military to civilian, military to political. in other words, for every $500 we are spending on military missions abroad, only $1 spent for political outreach or anything that could be counted as the sort of soft power approach. the biggest danger we face
without any question has always been the radicalization of populations at home. the reason that the united states has not had a single serious plan even after 9/11 and the fbi will confirm this, you know, most of the plans that whether they have uncovered have been pretty lame. the reason that we have not had a serious plan is that the american muslim community is not radicalized. it is pretty mainstream compared to europe, and compared to many other countries and almost every other country in the world, so that the focus should be maintaining the confidence of this population, figuring out ways to actually partner with them. >> and diz toes the current administration contribute in the focus to this? you write in your column talking about al qaeda's diminished power an influence and today's best hope for al qaeda is to find a young man who is radicalized over the internet and teach him to put explosives in his underwear.
today at the news conference at the white house, he was asked after nine years why has the government not found osama bin laden and his number two, and much of that is in the bush administration and now we are 19 months into the obama administration, and here is the president's answer. >> i think that capturing or killing bin laden and sou zawah would be extremely important to our national security. it does not solve the problems, but it is a high priority of the administration. >> does it need to be? >> i think that the ideal honest answer should be that the president should not publicly say these things, because it unnecessarily overvalues those two individuals. this is a larger network. but, yeah, of course, privately, he should be telling the people as strongly as he can, get them, and the reason to get them is not that these guys have iqs of 200 and have some mastermind plan that we need to understand,
but it is symbolic. you get bin laden and zawahiri, you get al qaeda. but they are hidden in caves in pakistan and afghanistan and not doing much. al qaeda central which is the group around bin laden all through the 1990s every two years was producing one spectacular terrorist attack after the other, and in the nine years since 9/11, they have been unable to execute a major terrorist attack anywhere and all they do now is to produce videotapes and it is like a virtual terrorism operation rather than actual terrorism operation. >> let's listen to president, and you can help us to put it in context. >> one of the things that i most admired about president bush is that after 9/11, him being crystal clear about the fact that we were not at war with islam. we were at war with terrorists and murderers who had perverted
islam, had stolen its banner to carry out their outrageous acts. >> a compliment from president obama to president bush. and as you note, there are cultural controversies over building a mosque in ground zero, and a gadfly minister in florida about burning korans an increasing mistrust of muslims living in the united states, is that the natural passing of time that this is a more political day now? >> well, i think it is interesting. i have first of all agree with you entirely, john, it is fascinating to notice that this is probably the most political politicized, polarized conversation we have had around 9/11 and you would have thought that the year or two afterwards it would be like that, but no, it is now. why is it? part of it is that, you know, we are not feeling threatened. i think that the proof of my column is just in the fact that
most americans don't think that we are at war. there is something that has changed in the republican party. i think that because the republicans are now in the opposition, and they are freed from the constraints of power and the responsibilities of power, they are having a field day with this, and frankly, exciting a great deal of suspicion and fear and hate. what is tragic to me is that president bush is not speaking out. this is something that is very close to his heart. he always believed that it was possible to bridge the divides between religions, being a man of faith, himself, so i would hope and i appeal to president bush that this is a moment for him to step into the public arena. i know he hasn't, but he must be looking at what is happening to the republican party with an enormous sense of dismay. this is not the republican party he was leading only nine years ago. >> it is an interesting point.z peek of what we will see this
weekend. >> we have a panel of what we are talking about, are we safer with it, with the man who headed up the homeland security, and the bush administration, and also peters or -- peter orzag, and what he has contributed. capable of moving your soul. ♪ and that's even before you drop your foot on the pedal. ♪ the new 2011 cts coupe from cadillac. the new standard of the world.
>> earlier this afternoon sarah palin responded to a dig by california's governor arnold schwarzenegger. he is on a asian trade mission, and he said, overlooking anchorage, but i can't see russia from here. will keep you updated as search continues. palin tweeted back, arnold should have landed because i could have explained our multibillion dollar state surplus and u.s. energy security efforts. what's he been up to? and noticing that president obama was not wearing his wedding ring at the white house news conference, but they said no problem, it is being repaired. >> tomorrow morning, the president and the first lady and vice president biden will at the end separate events commemorating the events of 9/11, and the president will speak at the pentagon, and the vice president will be in new york, and michelle obama will join former first lady laura
bush, and it is almost simply impossible to believe it has been nine years since those fateful moments. >> and nine years and let's just hope that we can be americans tomorrow, and set politics aside. i want to walk over to the magic wall, and who were the heroes of the pentagon and at the world trade center site, and in new york and across the country when there were some attacks and suspected attacks? it was the firefighters who were there, and in the times of budget crises, it is those first responders who are suffering. you look at the states in red, they have had the most firefighter layoffs because of budget crises. and if you see a state with both colors, layoffs and closures. you see where it is hard, but the states with the thicker yellowish gold around the states, those are the highest numbers of projected lay offs, because as the federal money dries up, they are looking at big layoffs, and one of the
layoffs tell you that if you have a five-man crew or four-man crew, here is the overall scene time. if you call 911 how long to get to the vehicle and get to the scene and do the most important scene, a five or four-person crew, ballpark of 15-18 minutes. smaller crew, longer response team, and two-person crew, 25 minutes or so for them to get to the scene, so a smaller crew puts you at risk. specifically, in closing at the city of new york. here what happened last year. 150 layoffs, and 336 jobs lost through attrition and maybe people moved out of state or retired or maybe the jobs were not filled because of budgets. but at this point, 336 jobs lost so far. this is still on the table heading into next year because of tough budgetary times and we will keep an eye on this as we salute the firefighters on 9/11. when we come back, officials in san bruno, california, have called a news conference at the top of the hour to bring you up
to date on the huge gas explosion, and we will cover that. today, president came in wanting to talk about jobs, taxes, economy, and how did he do? but then autoblog.com calls your interior lexus quiet. and automobile magazine goes comparing you to a cadillac. ♪ so much for the new kid fitting in with the rest of the class. the all new chevrolet cruze. starting under $17,000. get used to more. ♪
so why do i have to fill out the same medical forms over and over ? ( man ) technology can tell me exactly where i am... but when it comes to my health care, why do i feel so lost ? ( announcer ) we understand your frustration. at unitedhealthcare we believe it should be simpler, and more responsive. we're 78,000 people looking out for 70 million americans. big numbers... but they're what give us the data and the experience to match you with the right doctor for your tricky condition... to guide and stand by you through your toughest medical decisions... to help you manage a chronic condition more on your terms. because in the end, all our innovations... the technology, the numbers... all add up to one thing: treating you like a human being. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare. to learn more, visit us at healthinnumbers.com.
we off to the races. >> 53 day to election day and the president was hoping to change the economic debate out there in the country with the news conference at the white house and let's talk about whether or not he had success of easing the fears of the democrats on the ballot tonight. joining me again is cnn correspondent joe johns, and gloria borger and dana bash. and now, let's look at the word cloud technology and let's pop it oup and the screen here, and this is essentially if you take the transcript of the president's press conference and it highlights the word and how often he said it and the word you are struck by is going. the pres conference is to stress the achieves, but the president talked about the economy going to get better and plans to get
the economy going, and going as opposed to what we have done for you. and another thing is that the president was asked a direct question, and he proposed infrastructure spending this week, and that is building roads and insfra strucinfrastructure stimulus, right? >> zhuszh. >> right. everything that we are trying to do is to stimulate growth and additional jobs in the growing economy. that is our entire agenda. so, i have no problem with people saying the president is trying to stimulate growth and hiring. isn't that what i should be doing? i would assume that is what the republicans think we should do to stimulate growth and jobs. >> if i got this right, the president says it is okay to
stimulate growth, but don't say he is trying the do it with a stimulus program. >> right. you are basically asking him at this point to curse or say a dirty word, because that is effectively what it is at this point. >> it is a word. in a word. >> and words, you cannot say on tv, and george carlin or whatever, but the reality is that that is a word that people do know and it is a word unfortunately for the democrat tas people associate with a lot of spending right now that may or may not have worked. what democrats we saw out on the campaign trail this week in a big way in that the democrats who voted for it are desperately trying to make it real for the constituents and voters in their home districts, but unclear if it will work. >> he is not wanting to cause the democrats more trouble than he has caused them. it is not as if he can go out there to talk about everything he has achieved, because health care reform, 65% of the american people don't like it, and stimulus, and they don't like it
and financial reform, he is not getting the credit for it. >> and there is a debate out on all of the campaigns that the bush tax cuts are set to expire, and he wants to leave them in place if it is a family making $250,000 or less, keep it, but the republicans say to leave them all on and the president said no, we can't afford that and we need the revenue from the higher taxes on rich americans, because we need to pay down the deficit, but listen here, did the president open up the door to a compromise? >> well, certainly there's going to be room for discussion. my hope is that on this small business bill that is before the senate right now that we actually make some progress. i still don't understand why we didn't pass that two as i said, this was written by democrats and republicans. this is a bill that traditionally you'd probably get 90% or 100% republican support,
but we've been playing politics the last several months. if the republican leadership is prepared to do something serious for families hurting out there, i would love to talk to him. >> he said there's room for discussion at the top of that sound bite, he'd love to talk to them at the bottom. in the middle, essentially that's a bad idea. >> yeah. there's also an implicit assumption that there's a lot of distance between people that make $250,000 a year and people who make there are$1 million a . he said you're going to get the tax breaks at $250,000, but once you get above that that's when we're going to start hitting you and get rid of the bush tax cuts. this is one of his problems that the good that they're trying to tell people about sometimes it's very difficult to explain. it takes some explaining and americans, a lot of americans don't have so much patience. >> on the subject of explaining, let me walk over here a minute.
the president's a argument about not extending the tax cuts for those who make over $50,000 is based on this, number one. here's historical tax rates. president makes the case, tax rates are pretty historically low. if a rich american, wealthy americans, maybe you don't think you're rich out there, making $2 $250,000 or more. the bush tax cuts, if you leave them all in place the impact on the deficit is up here. if you take a$250,000 and above you take this money and bring it into the treasury and the deficit is not as big. that's the president's argument he needs that money here in washington for that. >> he's trying to say republicans are hypocrites, right? republicans are concerned about the deficit. americans are concerned about the deficit. so he's saying, okay, my republican brethren, if you're so concerned about the deficit why do you want to add that $700 billion to it but with these tax cuts? and why do you want to keep the
middle class from getting their tax cuts made permanent? >> and it's also from the perspective of democrats and one of the big messages they're trying to get across is also a question of fairness. one of the reasons you are hearing president obama now sticking to his campaign pledge to get rid of those tax cuts for those making $250,000 or more and the democratic leadership on the hill agreeing to that, even though it's controversial, and a question of whether or not it will actually stick legislatively is because they are apaplectc about the democratic base. this is one of the tools to bring them out that says, look, we're sticking to our campaign pledge, we're going to help the little guy, not the rich guy. >> all these arguments are really complicated. that's the problem in the midterm election. you know, for the president to say, okay, we're going to give you these tax increases on the rich but the middle class will be okay. republicans i talk to say he's in our wheelhouse.
we're just going to say he wants to raise taxes, democrats raise taxes. >> it's dangerous for the base, too. it is dangerous for the base if they were to go in and say, okay, we're going to give people over $250,000 the tax cuts. the base would get mad at him. that was a campaign promise. >> they're mad enough as -- we'll wait until after the election. joe, gloria, dana, thanks for coming tonight. up next, you know the street is out there saying, hey, if you could have been in that news conference today and ask the president a question, what would it be? ins. bold. daring. capable of moving your soul. ♪ and that's even before you drop your foot on the pedal. ♪ the new 2011 cts coupe from cadillac. the new standard of the world. the new 2011 cts coupe from cadillac. i switched to a complete tomultivitamin with more.50,
let's check in with rick sanchez, get a check at what's coming up on "rick's list" primetime. hey there. >> this news conference, john, in san bruno is getting started. we're getting brand new pictures of what this scene looks like. lots of unanswered questions we're going to get for you tonight. we'll have it right here on "rick's list." back to you. president's news conference got pete dominic thinking. if you had a chance to ask the president of the united states a question, what would it be? we sent him on to the street to find out. if you're a sports fan, you
might recognize one of the people pete found. watch this. >> reporter: what would you ask the president? >> can he make me richer? >> reporter: can he make you wisher? you lazy -- i'll answer, no, work hard. what kind of phone is that? >> i'm tired of working. >> reporter: tired of working? you're 12. get to work ♪ how can we create peace in the middle east ♪ >> mr. president, are you going to any fashion shows this week? >> i'd say, what is he wearing? >> reporter: good question. ♪ when are we going to see clean renewable technology ♪ >> reporter: legendary star chris mullen walking around like he's not one of the greatest players of all time. he's looking through his home. is jabar in there? >> it's about flexibility, see the floor, hit the open man, rely on your teammates. i'd ask if he has a good left hand. he's a lefty, right? >> reporter: he is a lefty. >> go right. >> president obama, how do you
like the job so far? >> reporter: what do you think he's going to say? >> it's challenging but rewarding. >> when are you going to legalize marijuana? ♪ what does it mean to win in afghanistan ♪ >> mr. president, you ever catch "john king cnn" high def? with my kid, pete? >> reporter: that last guy i'm related to him. i have to confess. >> your younger brother, right? >> reporter: that's my younger brother, thanks a lot. tell your dad i said hello, nice to see him on tv. what question would pete dominic ask the question? >> reporter: you and i talked on the radio, on my radio show today. i thought somebody should have asked the question about the extraordinary rendition case that got thrown out due to the state secrets clause. >> that's an excellent question. you could have asked him chris mullen's question, too. can you go to the right? >> reporter: can you